Cycle New Zealand: Otago Rail Trail

New Zealand
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It’s almost like New Zealand was made for cycling. This is a land known for its natural beauty, welcoming people and delicious wine, and this cycling trip just happens to take in the best of it. Kick things off in the outdoor paradise of Queenstown, then cycle the famous Central Otago Rail Trail through small gold-mining towns like Alexandra, Omakau, Wedderburn and Hyde. Meander through the open plains with pristine rivers, enjoy some proper South Island hospitality at local taverns, and rediscover the joy of pedalling through one of the most gorgeous areas in the entire country.

Availability

From 01/03/2024 to 28/04/2025

Departure dates & prices

Dates Availability Price
  • Mar Fri 01 2024 to Mar Mon 04 2024
    Sold Out
    From
    $1,678*
  • Mar Fri 22 2024 to Mar Mon 25 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,346*
  • Apr Fri 19 2024 to Apr Mon 22 2024
    Limited Availability
    From
    $1,930*
  • Aug Fri 30 2024 to Sep Mon 02 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,770*
  • Sep Fri 06 2024 to Sep Mon 09 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,770*
  • Sep Fri 13 2024 to Sep Mon 16 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,770*
  • Sep Fri 20 2024 to Sep Mon 23 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,770*
  • Sep Fri 27 2024 to Sep Mon 30 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,770*
  • Oct Fri 04 2024 to Oct Mon 07 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,840*
  • Oct Fri 11 2024 to Oct Mon 14 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,840*
  • Oct Fri 25 2024 to Oct Mon 28 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,840*
  • Nov Fri 08 2024 to Nov Mon 11 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,910*
  • Nov Fri 15 2024 to Nov Mon 18 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,910*
  • Nov Fri 22 2024 to Nov Mon 25 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,910*
  • Dec Fri 06 2024 to Dec Mon 09 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,910*
  • Dec Fri 13 2024 to Dec Mon 16 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,910*
  • Dec Sat 21 2024 to Dec Tue 24 2024
    Available
    From
    $1,910*
  • Dec Mon 30 2024 to Jan Thu 02 2025
    Available
    From
    $1,910*
  • Jan Fri 17 2025 to Jan Mon 20 2025
    Available
    From
    $1,840*
  • Feb Sat 15 2025 to Feb Tue 18 2025
    Available
    From
    $1,840*
  • Feb Fri 28 2025 to Mar Mon 03 2025
    Available
    From
    $1,840*

What's included

Cycle the spectacular Otago Central Rail Trail, the oldest rail trail in the country and voted 'New Zealand's Favourite Ride' for the past two years.
Ring along flat, traffic-free paths alongside some of the South Island's most stunning scenery.
Begin your journey in Queenstown, an outdoor paradise set among the stunning Southern Alps of New Zealand.
Experience firsthand the famous hospitality of New Zealanders on a trail built specifically to cater to cyclists.
Cycle in the company of an experienced guide as they share their unique perspective of this fascinating region.
By travelling on this trip, you’ll directly support our Intrepid Foundation partner, World Bicycle Relief.
Donations provide school kids, health workers, and farmers in far-out areas with bicycles that provide access to education, healthcare, and income.
Breakfasts Included: 3.
Hotel/Guesthouse (3 nights).
Bicycle,minivan (e-bike available,subject to availability).
Age: min 15.
Group Size: 1 - 12.
Guided bike ride - Otago Rail Trail.
Otago Rail Trail - 4 days Otago Central Rail Trail bike hire.
Transfer to Queenstown.
.

Itinerary

  • 1 - Queenstown Kia-ora! Welcome to Queenstown, New Zealand. If you have time before or after the tour in the country's adventure capital, there's simply no end to the line-up of optional activities including bungee-jumping, mountain biking, kayaking, rafting, helicopter rides, jet boating and paragliding. There are also plenty of cafes, restaurants and bars to keep you entertained. This cycling trip kicks off with a pick-up at 8 am. After the meeting, you'll jump in a private vehicle and follow the Kawarau River to nearby Clyde (85kms, approximately 1.5 hour), where you'll be fitted with your bike to start your cycling adventure along the Otago Rail Trail, which has been voted NZ's 'Favourite Ride' for the past two years. The trail runs for 152 kilometres/95 miles in total and was originally used to transport supplies to and from the Gold Fields, then later to transport goods and livestock. It fell into disrepair but was refurbished into a rail trail at the start of the new millennium and is now arguably the best way to explore the area and contribute to the local economy. You'll begin by cycling past vineyards, over an old wooden trestle bridge and along the Clutha River Track for around 13 kilometres before arriving in Alexandra via the historic bridge. Take a short rest in this delightful gold rush-era town, then cycle toward Galloway Station and though Chatto Creek, up Tiger Hill then cruise downhill to your overnight accommodation in Omakau/ Ophir. Perhaps join the locals for dinner and a locally-brewed Dark Horse beer or cider at the renowned Commercial Hotel before settling in for a well-earned sleep. For those looking for a little more riding we highly recommend a side trip to Ophir (4kms/2miles return from Omakau). Once a thriving Goldfields hub, its well-preserved historical buildings and one of the last surviving suspension bridges in Central Otago (Dan O'Connell Bridge) are well worth the extra effort.
  • 2 - Otago Rail Trail - Omakau to Wedderburn The highlight of today's cycle is the beautiful Poolburn Gorge section of the trail, which features two tunnels and two viaducts. You'll then ride through the Ida Valley farmlands, pedalling past Idaburn Dam, one of New Zealand's few outdoor curling sites, and visiting the Hayes Historic Engineering Works before stopping at Oturehua Tavern for lunch. After lunch, you'll continue north to the Golden Progress Mine and up to the highest point of the trail before stopping for the night at Wedderburn. In the evening, enjoy a traditional, farm-style meal at the Wedderburn Tavern (not included) and rest those legs.
  • 3 - Otago Rail Trail - Wedderburn to Waipiata A short but good day today - just 23 kilometres in total - though it's mostly downhill from Wedderburn to Ranfurly, Otago's Art Deco capital. Enjoy morning tea and have a look around this small yet eclectic town, then cross the Maniototo Plains. Here you are further from the sea than elsewhere in New Zealand and it shows in the scenery and the near-empty roads - this is Lord of the Rings territory, and the flat plains give way to snow-capped mountains on the horizon.
  • 4 - Otago Rail Trail - Waipiata to Middlemarch Today you'll cycle approximately 55 kilometres with stunning views of the Rock and Pillar Ranges. Starting your day riding alongside the Taieri River, the fourth-longest in New Zealand and one of today's highlights. Cross the historic Capburn Bridge and Price's Creek Viaduct and continue your way downhill, passing through more tunnels (including the famous Daisybank tunnel) then pausing at the Hyde Railway Disaster Memorial, which commemorates the fatal 1943 derailment of a passenger train. Enjoy a morning snack en route before arriving in Middlemarch and the end of the cycling part of your adventure. Take a while to grab lunch at one of the local eateries or load up at Maggies Ice Cream shop before transferring by vehicle (approx. 3 hrs) back to Queenstown, where your trip finishes on arrival.
  • The following product terms and conditions apply in addition to our Booking Terms and Conditions (available on our website) and terms and conditions of the relevant travel service provider.
  • Prices quoted valid for sale until 03 March 2024 for travel during the period specified (if applicable) unless otherwise stated or sold out prior.
  • All prices are per person (unless otherwise stated), subject to availability and may be withdrawn or varied without notice. Accommodation (if included) is based on twin share unless otherwise stated.
  • Advertised price includes bonus nights and/or stated saving (if applicable).
  • Additional supplier conditions and travel restrictions may apply. Please enquire for further details.
  • Airfare (including internal flights) is not included unless otherwise stated and, if included, is economy class unless otherwise stated.
  • Components of the total price including local payments, "resort fees", "national park fees", "trip kitties" and food funds (if applicable) may be payable direct to the supplier on arrival or to your travel consultant prior to your departure. Where applicable, these payments are included in the total price quoted.
  • Gratuities are not included unless otherwise stated.
  • Prices shown are fully inclusive of taxes, levies and government charges current at the time of publication.
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